Friday, 17 February 2012

An All Blacks Scarf

OK, so this scarf isn't for me or for Mr N, it's for a teddy bear!

Mr N has a ted (his name is Ted) which was given to him by his mother not long before she passed away. Ted is important and very special, since he brings back fond memories.

When we were packing to come over to New Zealand, we decided that Ted was important enough and portable enough for him to stay behind and then travel over with us instead of going in the container. So Ted has now been to Las Vegas, Boulder, CO and San Francisco. (I will admit that now if I have a slight homesick moment and Mr N isn't around I have a teddy bear to cuddle! I don't care if I'm too old to admit that! :-) ) I have to say, he was quite an eye opener on our journey over! The Air New Zealand staff were brilliant though even offering baby harnesses for him! :-)

Ted (with his old red scarf) and Mr N at Los Angeles International!

Anyway, we have full residency visas in our passports and it was decided that Ted should have his own silver fern, so I made him a new scarf!

I downloaded a silver fern image from the net and traced the ouline on tissue paper (the only tissue I have here in NZ is some I got when I bought some shoes the other day, hence the logos!)

 Silver fern image

I used some black velvet from a sample in my stash. Using an embroidery hoop, I followed round the edge of the pattern with back stitch.

Once I had an outline, I removed the tissue paper to leave just this outline of the silver fern on the black velvet.

Now to fill in the blanks!

I wasn't sure whether to fill in the fern with satin stitch or some other way. In the end I went for some kind of feather-type stitch. Now I'm no embroiderer, so I don't know the names of all the stitches and I certainly won't win prizes for the finished fern, but it looks good from a distance!

  Some of the fronds came out better than others.

So to finish off, I had to straight stitch by hand the length of the fabric in the absence of a sewing machine. (You can guess one of my first jobs once my machine materialises!) Anyway, we now have a very proud bear with his own silver fern!

  Say hello Ted to all your followers! :-)

PS Last time I checked, our container was somewhere in the China Sea, it's certainly going the long way round! Oh and I start work on Monday, new job, new country... It's going to be a bit strange - wish me luck!

Saturday, 11 February 2012

I sew grateful for...

Well I didn't think I was going to be able to participate in this Sew Grateful week, the last few weeks have been so different and quite an upheaval in some ways.

The last post was written in the UK in the winter and now I'm writing this from our amazing new apartment in Wellington, New Zealand. We're now right at the beginning of the world's day and it's strange reading some of the posts which have giveaways (I have to really think what time it is!)

We've been here just under two weeks and I love it. The city is fantastic, it's small, compact and bijou and everyone is sew friendly (geddit!) :-) Yes, I've had a couple of moments when I miss my friends back in the UK, especially those I sang with and saw frequently and those at work. Others, it's not quite so bad, as we often communicated by email. Sometimes that email is now quicker because I write in the evening and they write in the evening, we're only 13 hours apart and not 24!! (If that makes sense?) Mornings are fun, it's when I pick up most of my messages so far, which is a real brightener, particularly if you're not a morning person!

So how am I being sew grateful? Well, although I've not been able to sew with my machines since December (our container should get here by the middle of March), I've had the whole sewing blogisphere to keep me going throughout this time. We don't have broadband, so only one PC is running the Internet, so sometimes it's a fight to get to it (I've got it now!!) Ha ha! But I have managed to read so many of your posts to cheer me up and keep me going until that machine arrives (it's got past Somalia, so I'm hoping we're OK!)

I'm sew grateful for all your posts, Did you make that? has given me two points on the Map of Snoods (and more importantly got me knitting again!), I won a giveaway from Finally Waking Up, Lazy Stitching introduced me to some of her Kiwi friends, who in turn (the Curious Kiwi) has linked me to a sewing group meeting once a month to chat about sewing, etc, etc.

I also want to mention a couple of people here in Wellington who've helped out... Charlotte, who met us on the first day and has taken us under her wing, telling us all about the formal stuff we needed, applying for an IRD, etc, etc and finding our apartment. And Jenny, a friend from my choir in the UK, who moved out a couple of years ago and has been a star taking us shopping and inviting us for lunch and telling me all about the choirs I should join.

Both of them have shown me some fabric shops, which I think I might be frequenting quite soon!!

Discount fabrics:  this mainly stocks upholstery and furnishing fabrics (might need new curtains!!) and an amazing collection of buttons...

Sorry it's gone sideways and I can't turn it round (any ideas??)

Global fabrics:  oh, such a lovely selection of knits, linens and the finest cottons around! Mainly plain colours, but such a selection of plain colours.

A bead shop in Cuba Street:  I've never seen so many! Mind you, I've since seen a larger store in Petone!!

There were more than this on each side of the store!

A craft shop near Cuba Street, loads of embroidery threads to keep me happy!

A knitting shop, also off Cuba Street (this is the happening part of town) with loads and loads of wool, not to mention a lovely selection of sewing machines...

 Surely enough wool to keep anyone happy?

A Singer 160 Anniversary machine, $959 is about £500

Finally, the Spotlight store (I've signed up for their VIP club already!!)

There is still apparently another fabric shop for me to check out! Help! Will I ever have any money left?

And for those who are wondering... I did get the job I was interviewed for! I'm hoping to start work on 20th February as a Collection Management Librarian for the National Library of New Zealand! Yipee!! I'm excited and can't wait! (Mind you, I can't wait until March and our container arrives with our furniture and my sewing machines!!) 

Thanks Debi, I'm Sew Grateful :-)